Regarding "Being Shamed Into Action Is the Worst Reason to Go to War" (Aug. 31):
Columnist Charles Krauthammer's penchant for using loaded pejoratives like "dithering" when discussing President Barack Obama's choices vis-a-vis the Syrian situation is growing tiresome. Would John F. Kennedy have been thought to be dithering during the Cuban Missile Crisis? Substitute "prudent deliberation" for "dithering," and a willingness to wait for as much information as can be gleaned is entirely appropriate and condign, given the seriousness of it all.
And when Mr. Krauthammer says, "A president doesn't commit soldiers to a war for which he has little enthusiasm. Nor does one go to war for demonstration purposes," those of us with longer memories reflect back on 2003, when a group of neo-cons calling themselves the Project for a New American Century were ginning up an enterprise in Iraq that was in part just that: a message (read "demonstration") to the entire Middle East that America was not to be trifled with. A sort of "awe, shocks" response. Perhaps a little less "enthusiasm" and a bit more "dithering" might have been in order then.
Healthy skepticism is one thing, especially with the emphasis on the word "healthy," but the beauty part of being an armchair warrior/pundit is that one never has to be accountable when things go awry.